Friday, February 27, 2009

Five Forks

The RevGals gave us a good Friday Five today. I just hope I'm up for the challenge. So without further ado here it is:

I am at a life-changing juncture. I do not know which way I will go, but I have been thinking about the times, people and events that changed my life (for good or ill) in significant ways. For today's Friday Five, share with us five "fork-in-the-road" events, or persons, or choices. And how did life change after these forks in the road?

1. Visalia: After college I was looking to do youth ministry in my hometown where I knew where "stuff" was while I figured out what a youth minister does. Instead God drove me to the wilderness of CA where I knew nothing. It was there that I learned it was OK to go so far away from home. It was there that I was affirmed in my call and my leadership potential.

2. Dawn: As I entered seminary I was very single, but had no interest in any of the women if for no other reason than who would want to deal with being a clergy couple? That sounded like a nightmare. Then I met Dawn and I couldn't get her out of my head. A year and a half later I was done with seminary and we were getting married. Now that she is done with seminary it is going to be a headache figuring out the clergy couple part, but chasing after her may be the best choice I ever made.

3. Andrew: He will be six months in a couple of days. In some ways this parenthood is all too knew to properly reflect upon. Those who are parents know that it changes everything, but I can't really explain how. It is awesome. He is awesome. Who knew that a smile, cackle, or spit bubble could so easily melt away all of the other stresses weighing you down for the day. I now see the world in a whole new way.

4. Byron: In many ways it was a wonderful place for my first call. I had a supportive senior pastor, some great people, and we were in between my family and the in-laws... and we were in commuting distance of seminary for Dawn. We had an awesome text study where I believe I made some lifelong friends. On the other hand there were a number of people often worked against me, even launching some very hurtful personal attacks. I didn't realize how very hurt I was until I got here and have been loved intensely and I have felt the healing in profound ways.

5. Dad: I wasn't sure where to go with this last one, but I think I have to give it to my Dad. I watched him as I grew up playing with us kids, a regular at church, and running all the time. So I guess I have to give him some credit for influencing my desire to play with Andrew and winding up working in the church (before it goes to his head there were others as well). However, the nod goes to him here because of the running. I watched him run somewhere in the neighborhood of 30+ marathons. While it's been a struggle to run in recent years the desire is deeply ingrained in me. I have completed 11 marathons now myself. Running has also led me to my newest passion and that's coaching. It seems that every year I've had the opportunity to coach I've started enjoying it even more. Just over a week and a new track season begins!

I don't know if I clearly answered the challenge on this one. I think each of these people or places changed me for the better. I'm sure there are things that have changed me for the worse, but they just didn't come to mind this morning. If you've got some life changing "forks" I'd love to hear about those as well.


Singing Owl said...

Hi, fellow Wisconsinite! I do not know where Rome is, so now I'm gonna have to look you up. If you are anywhere near me, I may visit your church. I'm leaving mine on March 8, and I'm taking a month to wander around in other church traditions. Thanks for playing.

Jan said...

I liked reading about your family in your choices of "forks." The web of love is beautiful.

Lacy said... met some pretty FANTASTIC people while in Visalia...I may be biased, but the Lange family is surely some of those people! xoxo :)